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Shameful behaviour in 4yo(10 Posts)
We have had a weekend of on/off awful rude behaviour from our nearly 5yo DS, the two worst being:
Yesterday I took him to a trial football skills class that a friend recommended. He would follow the instructions for a minute or so and then keep running off/doing his own thing. Was being repeatedly asked to stop, guided to do the right thing etc nicely, eventually was sat out twice for 1 minute for consistently not listening. Afterwards I apologised to the instructor and he said not to worry, as long as I am ok with him gently disciplining him then bring him back. So the instructor said to DS in a friendly, jokey way about how next week will be better won’t it and Santa is watching so you need to be good etc, and DS replies with “well I’ll just smash a Kinder Egg in your face.” I was MORTIFIED . I apologised profusely, then told DS off repeatedly and frogmarched him home where DH gave him a talking to on unacceptable rude behaviour, how would he feel if someone said/did this to him etc.
Then on Saturday we went to a friend’s 5yo DD Birthday party at a pizza restaurant. DS has some anxiety with new situations sometimes or lots of people he doesn’t know. He clung to me initially and then sat at the far end of the table away from all the other children and could not be persuaded to move closer (some no-shows so the nearest kids were 3 seats away). He ate his starter and dessert nicely, but ate/picked at the pizza like an absolute pig. He kept blowing bubbles in his drink, shredded the plastic apron they make them wear by sticking his fingers through it constantly. I tried to discretely tell him to stop eating his pizza like X (picking off the topping and dangling them in the air or swinging them about, putting a piece of pepperoni on his tongue and sticking it out etc). I took the pizza away in the end which he wasn’t bothered about.
Why oh why did he behave so badly in both these situations? How do you discipline your children in front of other people? We use time out at home which works well most of the time, but attempting this in public results in a full-scale tantrum, which is obviously a situation I had to avoid at a party in a restaurant.
I am just so ashamed and upset
This sounds normal to me.
He is 4.
Why on earth are you ashamed? Maybe he isn’t ready for an organised football class in which he has to do what he’s told. Maybe he wasn’t particularly hungry for the pizza. If he is anxious about new situations how about giving him lots of praise for just being there at all?
Your expectations seem awfully high to me.
Ha. Following as he sounds like my almost 4 year old (although I don't think he would make a comment like the kinder egg one!). But I'm frequently embarrassed by things like this. I know people say it's normal but my DS always seems to be the only one doing things like that! Although maybe it's because I'm focussing on him and not other kids. My DS is also anxious sometimes too so I wonder if that's got something to do with it?
Is this how he normally behaves or was this just specific to last weekend? how is he in nursery/school?
He normally won’t speak to strangers, or even people he has only met a few times, so this statement was all the more shocking to me.
We do periodically have issues with him deliberately eating badly and neither ignoring or reprimanding work. On a few occasions we have just taken the meal away after he has been warned. Both nursery and school report no poor behaviour at lunchtime so it’s clearly an attention-seeking behaviour at home.
I’m still so embarrassed regardless of what anyone says
I have a 6 year old who at 4 could not do karate club. We tried again when he turned 5 and it was the same. ALL the kids followed instructions from the staff, he would for a minute then run off and do his own thing, mess around or very quickly spot another boy similar to him and try and coax them into copying him! He also blurted our inappropriate comments that I found highly embarrassing. Again, I didn’t see other kids doing this. In my eyes his behaviour was bad and at times embarrassing, sometimes strange. I did a lot of research on mumsnet and google in general and thought he may have high functioning autism. After seeing a child physiologist many times privately, he does not. He does have some anxiety- so in stressful situations, or environments he doesn’t like, the anxiety will come out as bad behaviour (nervousness) and inappropriate comments.
I can get social anxiety around grounds of people I don’t know and will be a bit of edge when we meet. This always results me in saying the wrong thing or something not appropriate! This I think many adults struggle with.
At 6 now he’s much better and has learned to cope in stressful situations. We talked a lot about what is appropriate and did some social skills work but only at 6 it’s sinking in. I hope at 7 he will be mostly ok )))) 4-5 was our worst age.
It does sound pretty normal tbf. My 4 year old is wonderful and smart, but definitely does this kind of stuff sometimes. Especially in social situations, which is bad for us parents! I think he gets a bit anxious, and doesnt want to 'perform'.
plonkie I think that's why my DS can get like that, he is a bit of an anxious child. But when it's on his terms he can perform to the gallery like anything!
He sounds normal to me for a 4 year old. Obviously you need to try to teach him the socially acceptable way to behave but also relax a bit about him and stop fretting about how others view him.
I have older children and I’ve seen the silly things lot of then do - but generally they turn out perfectly lovely in the end.
Maybe your son is not ready for organised activities - some children need to be a bit older and some children will never like them. My 8 year old has always hated organised sports and tends to act up if forced to do them - but he has his own interests that he enjoys.
Is this almost the end of his first term at school?? Reception children are exhausted at my school and we are having some not so nice behaviour